The Women's Center supports all facets of women's lives - the social, professional, spiritual, physical, intellectual, and emotional. We empower women and their allies to become active leaders and global citizens in their communities. The Center advocates, educates, and provides direct service and resources in support of gender equity and safety.
We're here to help. Get to know us...
Melissa Murray, Director
Melissa oversees all of the activities at the Women's Center and works to develop and uphold its vision and mission. As a leader, she addresses a variety of constituencies, covering a diverse set of concerns and promoting opportunities and educational equity for all women and female identified people. Melissa also consults with groups and individuals on personal and professional needs, and with administration on gender equity issues regarding gender-based violence. She serves as a liaison between the UVM community and other organizations and works with relevant groups and individuals on promoting an equitable, non-sexist, and culturally pluralistic environment at UVM.
Sarah Mell, Education & Outreach Coordinator
Sarah has been active in the field of sexuality education for more than a decade, with much of that work focused on college and University campuses. Trained by the award-winning education team at Planned Parenthood of Northern New England, much of Sarah's work focuses on intersections of identities and power as they relate to our understanding of intimate relationships and sexuality. As Education & Outreach Coordinator, Sarah provides training and workshop opportunities for students, staff, and faculty on concepts of positive sexuality, the prevention of sexual and intimate partner violence, and the ways we experience power and privilege in relationship to ourselves and others. She is responsible for the coordination of the annual Dismantling Rape Culture Conference each spring, as well as for getting the word out about who the Women's Center is and what we do on campus and in the community. She is happiest when she is performing on stage, or when talking with college-aged men about all things related to sexuality.
Judy Rickstad, Advocacy & Violence Prevention Services Coordinator
Also known as the "Victim's Advocate," Judy is responsible for providing direct services and coordinating services on campus for victims of sexual assault, stalking, and relationship and domestic violence. She serves as a confidential source to provide options, information, and advocacy to survivors of sexual violence, and to friends and family members. Additionally, Judy provides educational programs around issues of gender violence to students, staff, and faculty, and chairs the Sexual Violence Response Team. As an advocate, she works closely with a variety of campus and community organizations to help prevent violence and to provide the best service possible to survisors.
Enmy Soler, Office Manager
Enmy is responsible for the maintenance of all of the Women's Center budgets, facilities, and logistics and helps to supervise the student staff at the center. She plans the annual One Billion Rising Event, coordinates our volunteers and serves as an advisor for Alianza Latina. She also maintains our general email and social media accounts.
Maria Teixeira, Coordinator for Programming & Leadership Development
Maria Teixeira began serving as Coordinator for Programming & Leadership Development at The UVM Women’s Center in the Summer of 2013. She studied Global Feminism, Race & Racism and Political Science at The University at Buffalo and Johnson State College. She has worked within the movement to end gender and race based violence for nearly 20 years, with a particular focus on intersectional feminism and breaking down barriers to services and resources for conventionally marginalized communities. Her work and studies have included areas such as feminist/womanist theory and history, white supremacist capitalist patriarchy, human trafficking, The Prison Industrial Complex and the systematized criminalization of brown bodies. Currently, she is considering reproductive justice and the systematic oppression of women’s bodies as it occurs at the social services level.